Thai Immigration allows 30-day extension to foreigners with letters from Embassy

Due to the ongoing worldwide travel disruption caused by the coronavirus epidemic, the Thai immigration said it will allow foreigners marooned in Thailand to extend their stay for up to 30 days, Khaosod English reported.

“The bureau had previously permitted the extension to foreign nationals of 11 countries and territories, but we now granted it to every nationality,” Immigration Bureau spokesman Phakkhaphong Saiubonsaid said in an interview. “Those who wish to apply need to acquire a letter from their respective embassies.”

Phakkhaphong spoke on the day a massive queue reaching up to 3,000 people was seen at the Immigration Bureau’s main office at the Government Complex in Chaeng Wattana, as many foreigners are scrambling to extend their stays, file 90-day reports, and get other necessary stamps before a possible lockdown of the capital.

“The bureau was crammed with people today because they feared that a curfew would be imposed,” Col. Phakkhaphong said. “We are expanding the waiting area at our Chaengwattana office so that people can keep some distance from each other.

He added, “We are also looking for a larger space elsewhere to cope with massive queues.”

The spokesman also said most services such as the 90-day reporting are available online or via registered mail, though applications related to visas still require their physical appearance at the immigration office.

“Most foreigners do not need to come to the bureau in person,” Phakkhaphong said. “However, we still require them to report themselves in person in some cases such as applying for a marriage visa.

Foreigners who queued up for their documents at the Government Complex today said they had to wait in line for hours as queue numbers exceed 3,000.  Many were also told to come back on the following day.

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This article is taken from Khaosod English